Phoenix’s proximity to the Mexican border has resulted in a unique cuisine that fuses the best elements of US ingredients with the spice and fire of recipes from over the border. With a wide variety of restaurants to choose from, visitors are spoilt for choice as to where to find a good Mexican meal. We point you in the right direction here.
A colorful set of wall murals in the parking lot offers a hint as to the interiors of Barrio Café. Again, the interiors are colorful, but the food is much, much more so. Packed with zesty flavours and unusual twists, Barrio Café’s Mexican food is a lesson in creativity. Expect uncommon combinations, such as pomegranate seeds in guacamole. For those looking to try something a little different and experimental, Barrio Café offers that, and more.
2814 N. 16th Street, Phoenix, AZ +1 602 636 0240
A trendy, urban spot, Gadzooks is an ambitious restaurant that encourages you to build your own enchiladas with a wide variety of ingredients. A favourite with the younger crowd, Gadzooks fast, easy service makes it a simple and enjoyable choice. The enchilada combinations are also available as salads, and chopped and dressed accordingly, perfect for a lighter meal.
3313 N. 7th Street, Phoenix, AZ +1 602 279 5080
Set in a beautiful brick cottage in Scottsdale, the chandeliers and ornate interior decorations are only a hint of what is to come at Los Sombreros. The food here is traditional Oaxacan food, using ingredients from the region such as Oaxacan cheese cotija, and pumpkin seed. The food here isn’t the run-of-the-mill burrito-esque offering, but authentic Central Mexican food. Everything is home-made and fresh, especially the decadent portions of guacamole.
14795 N. Northsight Blvd., Scottsdale, AZ +1 480 991 1799
Living up to its name is the cheerful, quirky decor of the Joyride, long turquoise sofas, a patio with yellow-colored chairs, and the urban, hip atmosphere of the place. The variety of tacos is decadent, but if tacos aren’t to your liking, they also offer tamales, tortas, enchiladas, and so forth. There’s a cocktail menu and dessert menu as well; something for everyone.
5202 N Central Avenue, Phoenix, AZ +1 602 274 8226
A south Phoenix institution, Carolina’s Mexican Food has been serving authentic Mexican food for decades. There are several wallet-friendly options to choose from. Although the setting is quite simple, think rustic, well-worn tables, and no air-conditioning, you’ll still find this place packed with people from all walks of life looking to enjoy a hearty and healthy lunch.
1202 E Mohave Street, Phoenix, AZ +1 602 252 1503